Published: Thu, January 11, 2018
Sci-tech | By Jackie Newman

Astronaut anxious about transport home after space growth spurt

Astronaut anxious about transport home after space growth spurt

Japanese astronaut Norishige Kanai, on a mission to the International Space Station, apologised on Wednesday for saying he had grown 9 cm (3.5 inches) while in space and expressing concern about whether he'd be safe on his return to Earth.

"I have a major announcement today", Kanai wrote in Japanese, as translated by the BBC. Nothing like this since high school.

He joked: "This makes me a little anxious that I might not be able to fit in the Soyuz seats for our return".

"Very sorry for the outrageous fake news", said Kanai of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, who is on his first space mission.

What's rare is the rate and amount Lt Kanai has grown in three weeks of living on the space lab. It's not a permanent change though, as astronauts' spines compress again to their normal length when they return to the pull of Earth's gravity.

He joined five other worldwide astronauts in December for Expedition 54 to the global Space Station and is orbiting Earth 250 miles above.

Apple releases iOS 11.2.2 security update for iPhone and iPad
The other side of the recent security discovery was Meltdown which was addressed in the iOS 11.2 update. There are reports the Microsoft fix (Security Update for Windows KB4056892) bricks some AMD systems.

When asked if Kanai should be concerned about making it back to Earth, Anderson said he is not anxious because once you return to Earth your spine shrinks back to normal.

"There's a range of growth for different people, and everybody responds differently".

"You do get taller in space as your spine drifts apart, usually by about two to five centimetres".

The seat aboard the Soyuz MS-07 spacecraft that shuttles astronouts from earth to the International Space Station and back.

The 41-year-old Kanai, a former Maritime Self-Defense Force doctor and the 12th Japanese to travel into space, said he went back to the tape measure after fellow astronaut Anton Shkaplerov of Russian Federation questioned his newfound height. If crew members become too tall, it could pose a problem. This time round he was just less than an inch taller than originally believed.

Like this: